May 29, 2024

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Westminster Dog Show 2024: behind the scenes photos

Westminster Dog Show 2024: behind the scenes photos

Tennis balls were safely hidden when 2,500 dogs and their obedient human entourage trooped past the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Queens this weekend for the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

The event began on Saturday with agility, obedience and diving competitions before moving on Monday to competitions more familiar to the at-home audience: Best of Breed, Best in Group and Best in Show. The grand prize will be awarded Tuesday night.

The ratio of humans to dogs at the tennis center may be 2 to 1, but the balance of power favors the dogs. There were dogs being wheeled into strollers, Dalmatians posing like statues on the artificial turf, and Basset Hounds whose ears were tied to their chins so they wouldn’t sweep the asphalt. In a dedicated grooming tent, a Lhasa Apso was carefully ironed flat while several miniature poodles were sculpted into foam.

The event, first held in 1877, has called Madison Square Garden home for a century but was moved to Lyndhurst, an estate just outside the city, during the early pandemic. This is the second year the show has been held in the Flushing section of Queens, with Arthur Ashe Stadium providing luxury accommodations for the show’s main events.

Whether they won or lost, the dogs remained extremely well-behaved. Humans, who have a selection of beers, gins and tonics at several concession stands, had more varied results.